I’ve seen a few friends in my life come and go. Sometimes we just drifted away from one another very gradually (until I finally saw her four years later at the grocery store and we started talking again). Other times, I was told point-blank that we no longer had anything in common and they never wanted to see me again (that second one was freshman year in college).
So, the question boils down to this: if you do experience a friendship breakup, how do you cope with it? Here a few tips that helped me cope with my bad breakups.
It’s OK to Cry
The important thing to remember is (especially if your ex so bluntly told you that you no longer had anything in common) it’s perfectly fine to cry. And bawl over the phone to your sister about how you don’t know why they said such things or how much it hurt. A bit of advice: if they are cruel and you can’t figure out why, they probably weren’t a very good friend in the first place.
Do Something that Makes YOU Happy
I know it may seem like the very last thing you want to do when you’re hurting, but do something that makes you happy. After I had had a good cry, my friends asked me to go workout with them. So we did a Jillian Michaels’ workout (Level One of the 30 Day Shred). Then after the workout, I showered, and read a book that I can always count on to make me laugh, Julie & Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously by Julie Powell, while eating Greek honey yogurt. And, if my fingernails had been long enough, I probably would have given myself a manicure with some fun and sparkly color.
Talk to Other People
I know it’s easy to get holed up in your own pity party, but staying alone may just make you feel worse. Remember how I called my sister? Well, because she is so awesome, she drove the two and a half hours to Pasadena with her boyfriend (now her husband) and they came and kidnapped me for a long weekend – which was spent with them in Santa Barbara. Long story short: get out of your room and talk to people you love and who love you back.
Get Out of Town (Or Go Out on the Town)
If it isn’t feasibly possible to skip town for a few days with some of your best friends, then get a group of your friends together and go out. Get dressed up so that you feel incredible (whether that’s in a killer dress and stilettos, or your favorite pair of jeans and that top you’ve been saving in the back of your closet) and go out. We all ended up going to a little Italian restaurant that I loved before packing a bag for the weekend and skipping town. Go out swing or salsa dancing if you want to, or out to a restaurant you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t yet.
Or, if it’s more your style, stay in and have a night in with your friends. Watch chick flicks (or action shoot’em ups) and make homemade pizookies (freshly baked cookies with ice cream on top), or play board or card games. Do facials and give each other mani/pedis, or watch some sports or play video games. I know it may sound cheesy, but do an affirmation circle (where you all sit in a circle and give each other compliments). It boosts self-esteem. Seriously.
Be Civil to Your Ex (or Exes)
Chances are, you’re going to run into the friends who have dropped you – especially if you live near each other. When you do, you don’t have to be all buddy-buddy, but be civil. It shows that you can be the bigger person and not hold a grudge. It may hurt to see them again after things ended badly, but the fact is, life goes on. Surround yourself with people who truly appreciate how awesome you are and tell you often that you’re a good friend.
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Personal experience and friends’ experiences